New Brunswick has a long history of creating and celebrating the diverse community of the inner city and the surrounding neighborhoods. Now it has become part of the Ciclovia movement that started over 30 years ago in Bogota, Columbia.
Ciclovia means “bike way” and refers to a specific day in the life of our city when major thoroughfares are closed to car traffic and open to bicycles, pedestrians, dance groups and all sorts of community activities.
When this happened on October 6, our Dutch Dancers used the opportunity! It was a short performance, perhaps only 15 minutes long – just enough for the five dancers that had come out that day. But it was a great success! For 15 minutes we had the crossroad of Bayard and George Streets just to ourselves, meaning the eyes and ears of the crowds. While our dancers danced, I distributed decals and magnets inviting people to First Reformed Church. Later, we invited bystanders to join in a few simple dances. It was a hit, especially among many children.
When you look at the pictures, you can see what this all means: people from First Reformed Church meeting people in the neighborhood, and not much of a threshold in between. May we have many more such opportunities of building the community church we want to be! This one came as a gift to us.